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Local Farms, Local Food: Part 2

April 17th, 2018
By Guest Contributors

Upstate Forever's work preserving farmland helps prevent urban sprawl, boosts community health, and contributes to a thriving regional food community.

For our Spring Issue of the Upstate Advocate, we reached out to local farmers, restaurateurs, retailers, and other stakeholders asking them what a thriving local food scene means to them.

Here, in the words of some of the people who know best, are a few reasons why Upstate Forever is working so hard to protect our region's vanishing farmlands. Part 2 of this blog series features thoughts from Crescent Farm, Earth Blooms, & Eat Smart Move More SC.

 


Crescent Farm

Crescent Farm

What is your organization, and how do you see your role in the Upstate's local food community? 

We are a small family farm serving the Upstate of South Carolina. We offer a Certified Organic Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program for local customers, and provide several restaurants and markets with fresh, local produce year round.

Why does having a thriving local food/farm scene matter to the Upstate?

It educates people to the advantages of local food and that turns into local support for our farm, and others.

Why does it matter to you personally?

We want our farm to grow and thrive. We can't do it without local support!

In your opinion, what is the biggest benefit to buying/consuming local food? 

It is healthier for you, it tastes better, it keeps the local landscape open and allows farms to stay viable, it supports local families, it keeps many local businesses and infrastructure in place. It grows strong communities and makes the Upstate a great and healthy place to live, eat, and grow. 

What is your vision for the future of local food/farms in the Upstate? 

It would be wonderful if the schools, hospitals and large businesses could integrate local produce into their cafeterias and menus.

— Margie Levine & Holly Welch | Crescent Farm, Clinton | CrescentFarmSC.com

 


Kelly Singer of Earth Blooms Flower Farm (Photo by Katie Chen)

Earth Blooms

What is your organization, and how do you see your role in the Upstate's local food community?

We are Earth Blooms Inc. aka Earth Blooms Flower Farm. We produce flowers not food. And there's a large slow-flower movement going on just as there is slow-food....People are wanting quality products that are grown with love, closer to home and not from all over the world. For us, it brings peace of mind to know what we grow is consumed within 100 miles or so of our farm. 

Why does having a thriving local food/farm scene matter to the Upstate?

It brings opportunity for a high quality of life to folks like us who have a passion for growing/farming. It’s no “get rich quick scheme," but the trade off is tremendous! 

In your opinion, what is the biggest benefit to buying/consuming local food?

It keeps the money local. It really boils down to quality of life. Check us out at www.earthblooms.net!

What is your vision for the future of local food/farms in the Upstate?

To expand our consumer base and help develop SCupstateflowers.com into a prominent clearing house for flowers and info. 

— Kelly Singer | Earth Blooms Flower Farm, Mountain Rest | earthblooms.net 

Earth Blooms Flower Farm

Earth Blooms Flower Farm

Earth Blooms Flower Farm

Earth Blooms Flower Farm


Eat Smart Move More SC

What is your organization, and how do you see your role in the Upstate's local food community? 

Eat Smart Move More South Carolina is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that works with community partners to create healthy eating and active living options where we live, learn, work, pray and play. The focus of our work is advocacy, community action, and youth engagement. ESMMSC provides technical assistance and resources to coalitions around the Upstate who are working on increasing access to healthy foods. We also advocate for policies that support healthy food access and food systems. 

Why does having a thriving local food/farm scene matter to the Upstate?

A thriving local food/farm scene matters to the Upstate because it increases the amount of fresh, local produce available to residents and visitors. The local food system plays a significant role in the health of a community and can be a valuable way to address healthy food access. 

Why does it matter to you personally? 

It matters to me personally because I love trying new foods and having the opportunity to support local farmers and restaurateurs. 

In your opinion, what is the biggest benefit to buying/consuming local food? 

There are so many benefits! Buying and consuming local foods is good for the local economy and is an opportunity to use your dollar to support your community members. Additionally, local produce tastes better and has a higher nutritional content because there is shorter time to travel from the ground to your plate. 

What is your vision for the future of local food/farms in the Upstate? 

My hope for the future of local food and farms in the Upstate is that they would be a means to address equitable healthy food access in our communities. 

—Kelsey Allen, MPH, CHES, Manager for Community Initiatives at Eat Smart Move More South Carolina | eatsmartmovemoresc.org

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What is your organization, and how do you see your role in the Upstate's local food community? 

I am with SRHS and I do community outreach related to the Eat Smart Move More Initiative. This includes talking about nutrition and healthy food choices in order to maintain health and prevent disease.

Why does having a thriving local food/farm scene matter to you? 

It matters to me because it is important for people to have healthy, affordable options for food where they live. Locally sourced is always going to optimize the nutritional impact of our foods.

In your opinion, what is the biggest benefit to buying/consuming local food?

I can get a really good idea of how the food is grown and the foods are fresher, tastier, and more beneficial to wellness.

— Lori Taylor Boyd, Spartanburg (affiliated with Spartanburg Regional)  | eatsmartmovemoresc.org

 


View more posts in this blog series at upstateforever.org/local-food. If you didn’t get a chance to respond, and would like to, please contact sboman@upstateforever.org. Participants’ views do not necessarily reflect the views of Upstate Forever.

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